Recipes

I'll be honest... Blake cooks every night. With our schedules the way they are, it works out that way at this point in our lives. In any case, my husband is an amazing chef and I delight in the finished product, so I will shamelessly write about his kitchen expertise.



Easy Taco Casserole 


Ingredients:
1 lb. ground beef
3/4 c. onions
1 1.25-oz package of taco seasoning mix
3/4 c. water
1 16-oz can refried beans
1 8-oz jar taco sauce
2 1/2 c. tortilla chips, crushed
1 3/4 c. cheddar cheese, shredded
1 1/2 c. lettuce, shredded
1/2 c. chopped tomatoes

Directions:
Heat oven to 400 degrees. In medium skillet over medium-high heat, combine ground beef and onions; cook and stir until beef is browned. Drain. Stir in taco seasoning mix and water, simmer 10 minutes. In medium bowl, combine refried beans and taco sauce. In ungreased 8-inch square (2-quart) baking dish, layer half of bean mixture, half of beef mixture, 2 cups tortilla chips and 1 cup of cheese. Top with remaining bean mixture and beef mixture. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove from oven; top with remaining tortilla chips and cheese. Return to oven; bake an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serve with lettuce and tomatoes. Makes 6 servings.


Blake's Favorite Sugar Cookies (Blake and Stephanie)


Ingredients:
(Cookies)
1 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 c. butter or margarine, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cream of tartar
(Frosting)
1/2 box of confectioners sugar
1/2 stick of butter
2 tbsp. milk

Directions:
(For Cookies)
1. Mix powdered sugar, butter, vanilla, almond extract and egg in large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients except granulated sugar. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours.
2. Heat oven to 375 F. Lightly grease cookie sheet.
3. Divide dough in half. Roll each half 1/4 inch think on lightly floured surface. Cut into desired shapes with 2- to 2 1/2-inch cookie cutters. Sprinkle with granulated sugar. Place on cookie sheet.
4. Bake 7 to 8 minutes or until edges are light brown. Remove from cookie sheet. Cool on wire rack.


(For Frosting)
1. Soften butter.
2. Mix butter and powdered sugar. Stir in milk.
3. Frost when hot and let sit for an hour.
4. Blake likes them frozen :)

Caramel Croissant Pudding (Grandmum)


Ingredients:
2 Stale Croissants
1/2 c. Sugar
2 tbsp. Water
1/2 c. Heavy Cream
1/2 c. Whole Milk
2. tbsp. Bourbon
2 Large Eggs, Beaten

Directions:
1. Heat the oven to 350.
2. Tear croissants into pieces and place them in a small gratin dish that holds about two cups.
3. Combine sugar and water in a saucepan and swirl around to help dissolve the sugar before placing the saucepan on a burner over medium to high heat.
4. Caramelize the mixture by letting it boil for 3 to 5 minutes or until it turns a deep amber color.
5. Reduce the heat to low, add the cream and, while whisking, add the milk and bourbon. Any solid toffee that forms in the pan will dissolve easily if you keep whisking over low heat. Take the pan off the heat and, still whisking, add the beaten eggs until it forms a custard.
6. Pour the custard over the croissants, and - if the croissants are extremely stale - let the pudding stand for 10 minutes to steep.
7. Bake for 20 minutes. Serve.


French Cabbage Soup (Grandmum)


Ingredients:
1-1 1/2 lbs. Ground Beef
1 Small or 1/2 Medium Cabbage
2 c. Celery (chopped)
46 oz. Bottle of Tomato or V8 Juice
1 pkg. Lipton Beef Onion Soup Mix
1 T. Sugar

Directions:
1. Brown ground beef and drain if fatty.
2. Chop cabbage completely.
3. Mix in cabbage and celery. Steam for a few minutes to wilt. Add tomato juice, onion soup mix (or V8) and sugar.
4. Simmer 2 hours or more. Add more water if too thick. You could probably put it in a crock pot on low. Make sure it has enough liquid for long cooking.

Chocolate Cake with Whipped Frosting (Stephanie)


Ingredients:
Box of Chocolate Cake Mix
3 Eggs
Vegetable Oil (1/3 c.)
3 large eggs whites
Sugar (3/4 c.)
Pinch of Salt
Water (1/3 c.)
Vanilla Extract (1/4 tsp.)

Directions:
1. Follow directions on box of cake mix.
2. For frosting - In a heatproof bowl set over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water, combine 3 large egg whites, 3/4 cup sugar, a pinch salt and 1/3 cup water. Cook over medium, stirring constantly, until sugar has dissolved (or mixture registers 150 on an instant-read thermometer), 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on medium-high until glossy, stiff peaks form (do not overbeat), about 3 minutes; reduce speed to low, add 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, and beat just until combined. Use immediately.


Chicken & Asparagus Pasta (Blake & Stephanie)


Ingredients:
Chicken Strips (8)
Asparagus (1 Bunch)
Linguini (1 Box)
Alfredo Sauce (1 Jar)
Olive Oil (3 tbsp.)
Salt
Pepper
Italian Seasoning

Directions:
1. Heat up a large pot of water. Add pasta when water starts to boil.
2. Cook chicken in half of the olive oil, salt, pepper and Italian seasoning on the stove until cooked all the way through.
3. Cook asparagus in the other half of the olive oil, salt and pepper for 5 minutes on medium heat.
4. Cut up chicken and asparagus into bite-sized pieces.
5. Cook chicken and asparagus with alfredo sauce on low heat.
6. Drain pasta when cooked and cover with sauce mixture.


Chicken Parmesan Sandwiches (Blake)


Ingredients:
Thin Chicken Cutlets (4)
Flour (2 c.)
Romano Cheese (1/2 c.)
Italian Breadcrumbs (1/2 c.)
Salt (to taste)
Pepper (to taste)
3 Eggs
Tomato Sauce (1 c.)
Mozzarella Cheese
Vegetable Oil (2 c.)
Loaf of Italian Bread

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 250.
2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
3. Mix flour, Romano cheese, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper in a large bowl.
4. Beat eggs in a bowl.
5. Coat the chicken in flour mixture, coat in egg and coat a second time in flour mixture.
6. Place chicken in the oil and flip chicken after approx. 2 minutes.
7. Cook chicken in skillet until golden and cooked through to center.
8. Place chicken on a baking sheet, cover individual cutlets with tomato sauce and Mozzarella cheese.
9. Cook until cheese is melted.
10. Serve on Italian bread.